Conversations With My Horse, Jump Class, FCHP Schooling Show, April 2021

Riding Journal

Awareness of the outside world. Dentist update. Onlay, as suspected. I’m usually a cheap drunk, but needed three shots to get the tooth numb. Does anyone else get their ass kicked by the epinephrine?

Day Two. It took 11 years, but I finally got my fancy, mid-life crisis horse into a jumping class. [Show Report, Day One]

Doctor Whooves, Class 23: Cross Rails

Warm Up

Rodney: Big walk! Gotta Move! Gotta be on my game!

Me: You can slow down. No need to be big.

Rodney: Oh. Okay.

Me: These are actual crossrails. They are bigger than the piles of poles you have been doing. You got this.

Rodney: (hop)

Me: Eyes up. Heels down. Stay trotting. Stay trotting.

Rodney: (hop)

Rodney: That’s a mare. Over there. That horse. That’s a mare.

Me (hauling on horse head): We are going to walk to the other side of the ring now.

Rodney: Oooh, look.

Me: That’s a gelding.

Rodney: So?

Me: Well, At least I know you’re not worried about the jumps anymore.


Me: Here we go. Eyes up. Heels down. Stay trotting.

Rodney: !

Me: (Rodney gets an eyeful of white poles. ) We’re trotting and we’re trotting and we’re trotting.

Rodney: !

Me: Look at the jumps, not your fan club on the rail.

Rodney: .

Me: Okay, we calmed down to a walk. That’s fine. You can step over this.

Rodney: .

Me: (Course is colorful. This fence is brighter than the rest. Puts leg on.)

Rodney: !!

Me: Didn’t like Auburn colors? Maybe you’re an Alabama horse. (Heads toward green and white fence) Don’t mess up the Dartmouth fence.

Rodney: !

Me: (Reminds self to praise horse) You are doing great. You are handling all of this really, really well.

Rodney: !

Me: Now where did they put fence 8? Over there. Eyes up. Heels down. Trotting.

Rodney: !

Me: Whoops, 9 came up quickly.

Rodney: !

Me: (To self, maybe we should try cantering over the last jump? No. No. Remember what happened the last time we cantered a crossrail. Plan is working. Stick to the plan.) Trotting. Trotting. Trotting. [Recent Jumps]

Rodney: !

Me: Yay! Brave horse. Lots of stuff in there to look at. You were a star. Applause for Rodney!

Stay safe. Stay sane.

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